Orlando, FL – The Central Florida Crusaders have announced five new players, defender Grace Raji and forward Kiara Montenegro for the Women's team, and defender Gianpaolo Sirizzotti, goalkeeper Jasson Leon and defender Stephen McGinn for the Men's Team.
Originally from Carlisle, England, Raji came stateside to play at Lamar University from 2009-2013, appearing in 56 games for the Cardinals. As a defender, she scored three goals and added seven assists. Prior to coming to the US, she began her career with the Manchester United Girls Academy. She has also spent time with the Blackburn Rovers Ladies FC in the Women’s Premier League. Lately, she has worked with the Special Olympics Soccer Florida and various rec-level programs in the area as a coach.
An Orlando native, Montenegro played youth soccer with Club Deportivo Escuela Carlos Sarmiento Lora in Colombia before joining the Florida Rush Elite Soccer Team from 2013-2014, and Orlando City's ECNL team from 2014-2016. Collegiately, she played at Lees-McRae College from 2017-2021, scoring five goals in 40 games. Most recently, she was on trial with Deportivo Cali in Colombia in 2021.
A Venezuela native, Sirizzotti played with Metropolitanos FC and Atletico Venezuela FC and with the Venezuela U15 National Team in his home country before moving to the US. Stateside, he has previously played for the Florida Tropics (NPSL) and Atlético Orlando FC (NPSL) here in Florida.
Leon, a Colombia native, played youth soccer for Independiente Santa Fe from 2012 to 2014 and Club Atlético Banfield from 2014 to 2016. He played collegiately at Ohio Valley University, where he was part of the NAIA Regional Champion-winning team in 2018. In 2021, he played an international tournament with the Colombian soccer team Fut7 in Orlando. Recently, he has played UPSL for OFC Barça, Florida Tropics SC, Atlético Orlando, and Club de Lyon FC in Florida.
McGinn, an Edinburgh, Scotland native, came stateside to play at college at Young Harris College in Georgia before he transferred in his sophomore season to Webber International University in Florida. There, he was named All-Conference in The Sun Conference twice, as well as named an NAIA All-American in 2014. Played and captained the Central Florida Panthers in the NPSL in the 2018-19 season. Prior to moving to the US, he started his career in the youth academies of Hibernian FC & Dunfermline FC. He has played for NPSL clubs Storm FC in Ft Lauderdale, Kraze United, and the Central Florida Panthers over the past few years. Currently, McGinn is the Director of Coaching at FC Highland, an Assistant Men's Soccer Coach at Webber Intl University, and the Assistant Boy's Soccer Coach at Lake Highland Preparatory School.
ABOUT NATIONAL INDOOR SOCCER LEAGUE (NISL):
The National Indoor Soccer League was founded in January 2021 by a group of seasoned sports team/league owners with over 50 years of ownership experience. The league features both a Men's & Women's Division, competing in double header game days over a 20-game regular season that takes place between the months of December and April. Current teams include Central FL Crusaders (Orlando), Columbus Rapids (Georgia), Fayetteville Fury, Memphis Americans, Rome Gladiators (Georgia), and Tampa Bay Strikers. The NISL is committed to promoting and supporting our member teams, while providing an avenue for players, coaches, and front office staff to develop their skills and gain exposure for opportunities at higher levels, all while providing high-quality, affordable entertainment in the communities we serve.